Summary of Study Session 14

In Study Session 14, you have learned that:

  1. The main objective of WASH communication intervention in emergencies is to reduce the transmission of diseases from faeces to mouth through the promotion of good hygiene practices, the provision of safe drinking water and the reduction of health risks related to poor sanitation.
  2. Hygiene behaviour is particularly important in emergency situations where disease risks are acute due to overcrowding, poor water and sanitation, exposure to new pathogens and disturbance of familiar and safe habits.
  3. Preparing for emergencies involves developing a communication plan with participation from the community. The plan should set objectives, identify communication channels and human and financial resources required in an emergency.
  4. During the response phase actions are taken to deal with the immediate effects of the emergency. After an initial rapid assessment, activities for behaviour communication will be based on the prepared communication plan using the most effective communication channels to reach people affected with the priority messages.
  5. Rapid assessment of the public health situation is an important first step in emergency response to identify high risk behaviours that should be targeted for behaviour change communication.
  6. The recovery phase involves rebuilding, restoring and rehabilitating the community following the emergency. This phase can provide opportunities for improvements in WASH services but recovery from psychosocial impact may take longer.

Self-Assessment Questions (SAQs) for Study Session 14